Dave and Thinkling Unpack Suitcase

As Dave and I rewatched and unpacked Suitcase, we discovered something unusual. We disagreed over the contents. OK, not a huge disagreement, but one of us may be seeing things. We invite you to rewatch Suitcase and tell us what you see.


Tango, Marlin, Tom Sawyer, DeLorean, Best Friend, Colonel, Honeymooners, Phase 3; what do these episodes have in common? To me, those represent perfection. Except for maybe making each of them longer, I wouldn’t otherwise change a thing. Suitcase is solidly in a second tier of episodes. That is episodes that are wonderful, but have a few little issues I would fix if I could. Call them a 9+ on a 10 point scale. It speaks well of Chuck that this is a very large group; and so far in S4 I would add “Aisle of Terror” and “First Fight” to the list for an outstanding first part of the season.

I realize Suitcase is essentially a fluff episode. There is little real drama here. The first five episodes of this season all seem to be aimed at establishing the depth and strength of the Chuck/Sarah relationship and setting up the main arc to come. Well, I make it no secret that I love the lighter stuff that’s played just for fun; and I think Suitcase is the strongest of this intro arc.

The core strength of the episode is Chuck and Sarah working together as a team, and having fun while doing it. Favorite moments being; flirting just after they arrive in Milan, Chuck’s attempted “spiderman kiss”, Sarah’s reaction to the villain’s closet (“just say it”), “is she naked?”, Chuck closing the door on Sarah when the shooting starts, slap fight with The Hulk, runway cat fight, and “you are my home.”. And those are just the highlights, this a seriously fun episode.

The Buy More is neither a plus nor a minus to me in this episode (which is a blessing in it’s own way). The scene where Jeff and Lester get tranqed is quite funny, and I love Chuck telling Devon everything is normal as he watches Casey and Morgan wheel Jeffster into Casey’s apartment. I suppose Morgan being made manager is funny in it’s own right, but overall the Buy More gets little reaction from me.

So what keeps it from being a 10 on my scale? Mainly the silly recycled “Suitcase” story itself. This feels so much like last season’s Role Models. Most of us would consider moving in and unpacking to be basically the same issue. So we get this mildly amusing story that somehow they are separate in Sarah’s mind, so gee, we get to see the issue addressed twice. This is only a mild annoyance since both episodes are a lot of fun and Suitcase is actually the stronger of the two. But still it would be nice if we got more frequent episodes with no relationship issues between Chuck and Sarah at all. I’m really fine with legitimate couple’s issues coming up, Aisle of Terror and First Fight being excellent examples to my mind. But rehashing the Role Models issue seems a lot like the writers aren’t sure how to handle a stable relationship to me (or simply don’t want to).

When we first set out to do this season recap we mentioned the idea of parallel episodes. I know Joe and I didn’t really address that much on Anniversary. I’ve already mentioned why I see such a parallel to Role Models. I suppose I could say a little on why I thought it was better handled here; it mainly comes down to how the theme was carried through. In Role Models, the couple’s issue was loaded in the front and back (with one line in between “you’re not going to ask me to move in with you again?” which is essentially just a restatement of the issue). While in Suitcase, I thought they did a better job fitting the issue into the story. First in the previously mentioned closet scene, very funny; then later, when they have to fly back to Milan and Chuck says something to the effect of “good thing we’re already packed.” I thought that integrated nicely into the main story.

Thinkling, I know you and I had mostly similar reactions to this episode. So I guess my first question would be if you have any particular disagreements? or if anything struck you differently than it did me? Or if the answer is no to both if you can just add a thousand or so words of text so it looks like we did some work on this?




LOL. Where did I put my bag of words?

Well, Dave, I’ll shock the world (not) and agree with you. This was one seriously FUN episode. Is that an oxymoron? No matter. To your list of favorite moments I might tack on a few more. Funny Sarah and her funny faces… throughout! the episode. One more perfectly delivered Sarah line, “There’s a safe in the corner, here.” Really, the entire break-in was so fun and funny. The end of the fight when Sarah searches the crowd for Chuck and the open look of pride and adoration on his face. Bravo! Then their arrival on common ground again. “It’s good to be back at at work.” … “It’s good to be home.”

Where Suitcase hits me differently is the view that it is just a Role Models retread. I say it’s the continuation on a theme and so much more than a retread. Suitcase made me think about … well, Sarah’s suitcase: its symbolism and the stunning growth that Sarah’s unpacking sets in motion, beginning in Suitcase and continuing through Phase 3.

S: I’ve never had a real home, and I wanted this to feel like one.

C: Let me help you. … What’s this [picture]?

S: Uh … that’s just something I like to keep in my suitcase … at all times … whether I’m in Portugal or Russia or … Burbank. This ah, makes me feel comfortable … safe. Look, I know it’s probably taken me longer than a normal girl, but you should know that … you’re my home Chuck. You always have been.

Would it surprise you to know that Sarah’s suitcase makes a physical appearance in 4 other episodes, and that related themes appear in at least 8-10 additional episodes? For anyone who’s counting that’s pretty much all over the 25% range. I dunno … could be a theme. So let’s unpack it.

First of all, Sarah has either got a Sword-in-the-Stone-Merlin-magic-carpetbag thing going, or she’s the queen of lite. I’ll assume the latter. Yes [spies] do [pack light], b/c we always have to be ready for the next mission.

For such a larger-than-life character, one who has lived all over the world, she has lived a pretty small life.

In contrast to Sarah’s two suitcases, look at Chuck’s bedroom. It is bulging with stuff. As ordinary as he seems, and as common as his life appears, he has lived a fuller life. Not that the measure of a person is his stuff, but Chuck’s happy moments, experiences with friends, his special bond with his dad are recorded in all that stuff, each item a memory. Sarah’s life is summed up by the stamps in her passport and a stack of expense receipts. I may have a lot of stamps in my passport, but I think this is the first time I’m actually seeing the place. (Sarah, Honeymooners)

So let’s follow Sarah’s suitcase trail. We know how she grew up. She never had a real home, but lived from con to con. Even though a good con man can leave town whenever he wants, I get the feeling dear old dad left towns by the dozens. Did she carry anything special with her? Did she even always have time to pack? Or was she accustomed to collecting some bare necessities in a plastic bag (as in Colonel)? How many times had she formed fragile attachments or put down a timid root, only to uproot, detach, and depart?

Fast forward 20 years. Sarah Walker still has no home. She lives from mission to mission. She is a spy. She doesn’t fall in love or put down roots. All that begins to change, however, after a regular guy fixes her phone, saves a ballerina, takes her to dinner, and diffuses a bomb with a computer virus. Like the morning light, during a conversation on the beach, Sarah’s life begins to expand.

Carina alerts us to the change in Sarah as she finds her friend uncharacteristically content in Snoresville. At some point, real life and real love took root in a fallow heart, and a budding sense of home was the result.

In Nemesis, the suitcase makes its first live appearance. Sarah is packed. But for the first time in a long time, she’s not sure if she’s ready to go. She is at a crossroads. Chuck represents love and home, real life. Bryce represents the illusory, ever-changing-but-always-the-same spy life she’s used to.

Her heart betrays the spy persona she created to protect it, and she stays. The cost is an internal war between her heart and her spy-sense.

Her heart is steadily gaining ground until the next live appearance of her suitcase, in Broken Heart. This time her suitcase is packed, and she is definitely NOT ready to go. But orders prevail … almost. Her heart will not surrender.

Then her upbringing comes in handy when she is ordered to bunker Chuck. Her heart tells her to leave town, no time to pack. But she is still living one mission at a time; so when she is given orders to leave with Bryce, she initially submits. But she loves Chuck, and finds that her heart will no longer be led by her sense of duty. She decides to stay with Chuck … her home.

We will never know what that life might have looked like, because just as Sarah begins to follow her heart, Chuck begins to follow the beckoning of destiny.

Dreading what the spy life will do to Chuck and fearful of losing everything she loves, she resolves to do what comes naturally pack and run. Only this time she plans to take Chuck, her home, with her … Sarah’s version of eating her cake and having it. This brings us to the 3rd appearance of the suitcase. In the worst episode and most depressing scene of the series, we see Sarah waiting at the Nadrazi station in Prague, ready to embark on her happy-ever-after life-with-Chuck. Next we see her abandoned on the platform with nothing but her suitcase and a train ticket.

Sarah returns to her assignment with TeamB, but emotionally she has regressed. Having lost her sense of home, she slams her life back into her suitcase and becomes the small, confused, miserable woman we saw in the misery arc. As Chuck becomes a spy, she watches the assault on her home and her dreams, sure that they will be destroyed. The final straw is the invasion of her home by someone else who has taken her place in her home.

As the misery arc winds down, she is about to give up, pack, and leave town … because that’s what she does. Chuck finally convinces her that he is still her Chuck. So, she packs a much lighter bag (4th appearance of one of Sarah’s bags) to run away with Chuck. Life on the run with Chuck. She can do this. It feels normal, better than normal … back to having her cake and eating it, too. A few days later, in arguably the happiest episode of the series, Chuck & Sarah finally board the train together and resolve to run away. Again Sarah’s norm.

Finally they end up back in Burbank with Sarah waffling about moving in … something she has never done. Remember she’s never had a home … never done “normal.” It is both poignant and humorous that she is so clueless when it comes to normal. This is part of Sarah’s story … wanting to do normal with Chuck, willing to do normal with Chuck, but having to learn and adjust every step of the way.

So, do I buy that she moved in and didn’t unpack for 8 months? I admit it strains the ability to suspend disbelief. Yet, I love this episode, not only for its abundance of fun, but also because it gives us a humorous picture of Sarah’s emotional process … that of finding her home.

Unpacking means staying. Staying is something Sarah has never done … ever. Unpacking stuff doesn’t cut it. It’s easy to repack stuff. To stay someplace new and different, you have to unpack emotionally. Sarah is unpacking more than a suitcase with Chuck. She is unpacking herself … her life, her emotions, and her heart. She is putting down roots in a relationship and finding her home in Chuck.

And the picture? After unpacking everything in her suitcase, there’s one thing she won’t ever unpack … the picture. Sarah Walker has been away form home her whole life, but now she finally has a home complete with love and comfort and safety. All the things most of us take for granted are new and priceless to her. Now, whenever she has to be away, she carries with her the love and comfort and safety of home in the picture of the man who is all those things to her. That’s what I call having your cake and eating it, too.


Dave’s Reply

Well,  as always, you manage to find considerably more depth and meaning in these things than I did.  I like your take and illustration of Sarah’s life and growth.   But I guess I would pick one little nit (more with the writers than you Thinkling!)  To me,  the running away together in Honeymooners essentially is marriage.  With the “spy vows” they made,  it was like a lifetime pledge.   I’m quite happy with that.  But then Sarah balking a little at moving in, unpacking, and actual marriage;  just feels like a retrograde movement.   Don’t get me wrong,  I’ve actually liked every single episode since Honeymooners, so I’m not talking about an extreme dislike or feelings of betrayal like the misery arc.   Its just that those moments get a bit of an eye roll from me.  Phase 3 feels more like the Sarah Walker I expect from Marlin or Colonel; you know, the leggy Valkyrie who will walk through walls for Chuck.  Some of her hesitations seem silly by comparison.  Usually a very fun silly,  but still something that feels very manufactured for serial television.

Again,  I don’t want to get too negative here.   After all,  I’m a big fan of many manufactured products;  and Suitcase was a great time.  So far, since Other Guy really, they’ve put together the longest run of episodes I like in the history of the series.  And as I said at the beginning, Suitcase was a wonderful installment in that streak.

Thinkling’s Last Words

I hear that! I can’t even really disagree with you, Dave. We’ve talked before about the Honeymooners vows having that marriage-lifetime-commitment feel to them and that it’s apparent that Chuck & Sarah are in it together for life. So it was a bit of a head-scratcher for all of us when Sarah balked at moving in. And I freely admitted that the weird unpacking thing seriously strains the ability to suspend disbelief.

So TPTB are just messing with us (say it ain’t so!); or they like to regress in order to create the illusion of progress (would they do that sort of thing?); or maybe there’s more here than meets the eye. Or maybe all of the above.

I have no doubt that Sarah loves Chuck. That’s been abundantly clear for … forever. By Ring she had made the definitive decision that she wanted to be with him … make a life with him. So, even wanting all that and being committed to it in her heart, is it possible that the steps and how-to’s are still difficult for her? Is there anything in her background to support that, even a little? Yeah, I think it’s possible. Maybe it’s just me, but I like to ponder what might be below the surface creating the waves we wonder about.

It’s also interesting to consider how Sarah’s baggage affects Chuck, a man with deep abandonment issues. To top it off they’re terrible communicators. Overcoming these issues to build their relationship and their unrelenting love and determination to do that is the story that’s unfolding in s4. I see Suitcase as the delightful kick-off of an 8-episode growth arc, mostly for Sarah, but also for Chuck & Sarah’s relationship. The mood has been light and fun; the villains, best ever; the mom hunt, one twist and turn after the other. And in the midst of it all Chuck & Sarah are growing and becoming the couple and spy couple we love and love to root for.

So, Dave, regardless of how we see the issue of unpacking, we definitely agree that Suitcase is the 8th episode in a 16 episode winning streak. And how much we love the Sarah of Phase 3. Was it silly … all that we had to go through to get there? Or was it a legitimate part of Sarah’s story?

What does everyone else see the second time around? Is Thinkling seeing things that aren’t there, or is there something there to see? Is s4 just light and fun, or is it … can I say it … GENIUS?

Tell us what you see.



About thinkling

In my [younger] youth, I was a math teacher, basketball coach, and computer programmer. In 1984, we moved to Brazil, where we serve as missionaries. I like to design things and build things, read things and write things. We now live part-time in Brazil, part-time in the US. Love them both. Wife, 37 yrs; mom, 30 yrs. I am blessed.
This entry was posted in Analysis, Observations, Season 4. Bookmark the permalink.

90 Responses to Dave and Thinkling Unpack Suitcase

  1. First Timer says:

    It’s not so much that Suitcase duplicates Role Models (it mostly does), but that Suitcase makes Phase Three superfluous.

    Phase Three bored me (except to watch how the episode was executed) because Sarah said EVERYTHING at the end of Suitcase. Once she has declared Chuck her home, the writers have no place to go in Phase Three. You simply can’t rachet up her commitment any further. Everything is stunts and action.

    In Suitcase, the dialogue for the Sarah character is so definitive and specific (Chuck, not any particular place, is her home) that nothing that happens in Phase Three is dramatic.

    Chuck, not the spy, brought a tank in Other Guy. That was his everything moment. It was the symbol of the “spy” lengths he’d go to in order to match his previous seen emotional commitment. Sarah, the spy, declares Chuck her home. That was her everything moment. It was the symbol of the emotional lengths she’d go to in order to match her previously “spy” commitment.

    Everything since those moments for each character is writers plowing well-defined ground. There’s nothing wrong with that, but they can’t keep making believe it is new. And the fans should (in my opinion, of course) should stop making believe anything in Phase Three was character movement.

    Or think about it this way: What is more dramatic, unexpected and character-changing: Sarah calling Chuck her “home” or her fighting her way across Thailand?

    For Sarah, it’s the emotional movement and that reached its apex in Suitcase. Everything since then has been marking time, feints like the marriage issue and action sequences dressed up as emotional exposition.

    • atcdave says:

      Was that a trick question? As a guy, I’d choose fighting her way across Thailand every time! Best episode ever.

      • First Timer says:

        I accept that I am virtually alone in my opinion of Phase Three. But I simply saw nothing new there. As for fighting across Thailand, well, Sarah has already murdered in cold blood for Chuck (Mauser) and commited treason (by show standards) at least twice. So why is ANYTHING she did in Phase Three surprising?

      • atcdave says:

        Psycho Sarah never gets old.

      • alladinsgenie4u says:

        Psycho Sarah is definitely Adorable 😉

      • atcdave says:

        I considered phrasing it more like that Genie. How can you not love Sarah threatening someone with an ammonia injection or creaming a thug in a crowded bar? Suitcase is a fun episode, but Phase 3 is Chuck perfection.

    • thinkling says:

      I agree up to a point, FT. Saying You’re my home, Chuck. You always have been does pretty much say it all. It covers the emotional bases and reveals her commitment. So, Sarah’s love and commitment aren’t new in the episodes that follow.

      But once you make a commitment, you have to live it out, and it’s hard to know what all that might entail, when you first commit. So, Suitcase establishes Sarah’s love and commitment. In subsequent episodes she learns what that means, how to communicate it, and how to live it out … in all different types of situations.

      The love and commitment are no surprise. But each new situation tests that love, reveals new depths of it, and requires new demonstrations of it. That’s where the newness and surprises come in. And with each test the love and commitment become stronger.

      The other aspect is that Sarah’s love for Chuck isn’t something that she can define in herself alone. Part of it has to be defined in relation to Chuck and his needs. One heartfelt declaration does not a relationship make.

      In Phase 3, she gained insight into Chuck and his perceptions and needs … things she had not realized before. It wasn’t just about her rescuing Chuck, but about her responding to his needs. It required her to be more open about her feelings … beyond even the “you’re my home” declaration. It wasn’t the fighting or treason that was new. It was the vulnerability and communication that were really new.

      • First Timer says:

        I just don’t see an original thought or action in Phase Three. My opinion, which I admit is the extreme minority. There is simply nothing there that they hadn’t had the Sarah character say or do before.

        In fact, they also threw in one of those handy plot lies, too. Since Sarah has NEVER wanted or needed Chuck in the spy life, Morgan’s claim to her that she never told him she loved him without the Intersect is specious. She’s already run from the spy life with him once, pitched the idea another time and said it was “real” AFTER the original Intersect was removed.

        So I don’t see anything new there, either, making the supposed emotional payoff after she rescues him hollow. Chuck’s insecurity about Sarah sans Intersect is CHUCK’S issue. And, of course, Chuck is always written as insecure, so they are going to keep coming back to that ad naseum.

        But to suggest, as Phase Three did, that Sarah had gone somewhere in her evolution with Chuck is silly, in my opinion. If we knew nothing else about Sarah, if they have given Sarah any depth at all, it was that she loved Chuck the guy, not the spy. Hell, they risked Season 3 on that very concept…

        So to suggest some epiphany from Sarah on that point or to suggest it was the first time she communicated that to Chuck is, in my opinion, ludicrous.

        If she ONLY wanted Chuck as a spy and had told him that, we wouldn’t have needed season 3, would we?

        Hey, wait, there’s an idea… 🙂

      • alladinsgenie4u says:

        Suitcase, for me, is right up there in the top tier episodes of this awesome season.

        t wasn’t just about her rescuing Chuck, but about her responding to his needs. It required her to be more open about her feelings … beyond even the “you’re my home” declaration. It wasn’t the fighting or treason that was new. It was the vulnerability and communication that were really new.

        Thinkling, this above segment is a very beautiful description.Thank you.
        I believe that during her conversation with Morgan (proposal plan convo) she realized how much she had missed out by not being more open about her feelings.

      • thinkling says:

        I think we see Sarah’s commitment to Chuck far more easily than he does. But she does give some mixed signals. She said she could be with Bryce and not him, b/c Bryce was a spy and Chuck was an asset. Then the day after she said it was “real,” she told him she was going on a mission with Bryce, the spy. He never learned that she changed her mind. Then in Final Exam, he said if he didn’t pass the red test that would mean they couldn’t be together, and she said probably not. So there is some basis for his insecurity, besides his own neuroses. Not saying he’s right, just that I can see where he might have gotten his thinking.

        But, hey, one thing we totally agree on … not needing season 3 🙂

      • joe says:

        You know, on re-watching I noticed more than one subtly in Suitcase that blew over me before. Chuck & Sarah aren’t the only ones trying hard to adjust to a new relationship.

        Ellie: Devon, you are the worst liar in the world. Just tell me. Is this about my mom?
        Devon: Yes. I just don’t want you to feel like anyone or anything is missing.
        Ellie: Well, I don’t want you to be worried about me. I don’t feel like anything is missing. I didn’t need my mom when I was a teenager, I didn’t need her in med-school, and I don’t need her now, okay? You and Chuck are the only family that I need.
        Devon: Okay.
        Ellie: Okay. So let’s make a deal. I will let you help me, but you have to let me pitch in too. We’re better as a team.

        That last line could have been Chuck & Sarah, and with the way this show is built, it *is*, too.

        Oh! Not to wrench the topic (again!) but there seems to be another deliberate time-line thing. Sarah does say it’s been 8 months, yet Jeff begins his soliloquy with “Day 184, still runnin’ from the po-po.” That sounds like 6 months to me!

      • JC says:

        Take away all the nonsense that Chuck thinks Sarah didn’t love him without the Intersect and her rampaging through Thailand. There were two scenes that have never been addressed by the writers when it comes to Sarah and how she deals with Chuck.

        The scene with Morgan, yes they used the whole Intersect idea but what came across was she’s still doesn’t tell him anything. And the ending with her saying “There’s so much I want to tell you”. That for me was the biggest moments of growth from Sarah. Lets just hope they actually show her opening up to him.

        As for the rest of the Phase Three it was TPTB’s attempt at repairing the character damage Sarah suffered in S3.

      • atcdave says:

        Yeah JC, I think repairing S3 damage is a lot of what’s going on, really all season. Think that’s why they go to such extremes to establish the strength of commitment early in the season. And Phase 3 was calculated to “fix” Sarah. It’s mostly worked. I’ll always resent what we were fed last season, but the show is in such a good place right now, and we have to believe Sarah is completely committed to Chuck.

      • alladinsgenie4u says:


        Good thing you brought up the Sarah/Morgan scene from 4×09. That was like an eye opener for her. Granted she had become more open to Chuck but in that moment maybe she realized that there was tons of stuff that she should have said but didn’t. And that makes the ending scene of the rescue all the more powerful.

      • Jen says:

        In Suitcase, i loved seeing Sarah as a girl, a woman that is transitioning from being always an agent, all the time, to a woman in love, and letting this side of her come out, lettign go of all her old ways, getting out of her comfort zone, all for the love of her life. That scene at the end of the ep (before the childresn talk scare) was so special. Seeing Sarah express her emotions, say outloud that Chuck is not only her “home”, but that “he always has been” was HUGE… we know it by seeing Chuck’s face when she says it. Her admission that she carries that picture of them around becuase it makes her feel safe… vulnerability and honesty, and 100% emotion. I think i like to see the emotional and sweet Sarah so much because i also know how kick-ass she is (Phase 3!). We know she’s a woman in love, and she’ll do anything to protect that, so Phase 3 is a good show of how serious she is in her comitment to Chuck. In Chuck and Sarah’s world… a woman in love becomes a she-male and fights her way thorugh Thailand, to bring back the man she loves;) thanksfully in our world, we don’t have to go that far 🙂

    • Joseph (can't be Joe) says:

      IMO, Phase Three has little to do with Sarah’s commitment to Chuck, in fact it has very little, if anything, to do with Chuck (in a sense).

      Phase Three is all about Sarah realizing for the first time exactly what her life would be like without Chuck. Or, Sarah finally realizing what she stands to lose.

      I can understand FT take in this episode, to some degree, because really Sarah coming to this realization was something that was required last season in order for the DYLM scene to be a climatic payoff it should have been.

      But I do agree, the words at the end of Suitcase are important stepping stone for Sarah. (if a little confusing when taking S3 into account – probably best not to)

      • atcdave says:

        The disregarding of S3 may be one of the best reasons for redoing a lot of those issues.

      • JC says:

        To be fair both Chuck and Sarah’s motivations have been all over the place since Ring Pt1.

        Trying to incorporate S3 into the previous seasons and this one is quite impossible.

      • Tamara Burks says:

        That realizaton was definitely the main point behind Phase three (though Morgan pointing out how much Sarah’s withholding hurt him was really good too).

        The Sarah without Chuck is the one Casey wouldn’t mind shooting and then going for pancakes after. He wouldn’t have been her partner. The Sarah post Chuck s the one he’d disobey orders for.

      • Faith says:

        I really see Sarah as someone that goes through this relationship in baby steps. It’s really the only way she can. So while Honeymooners pretty much illustrated her commitment there’s still something missing there that Suitcase plugged up and by extension Phase Three. It’s subtle but it’s imperative, maybe I’ll get to writing about it one of these days lol.

      • alladinsgenie4u says:

        @Faith It’s subtle but it’s imperative, maybe I’ll get to writing about it one of these days lol.

        Now that would be difficult wouldn’t it – what with you still very high on the post-engagement euphoria of Smallville. 😉

        Jokes aside, looking forward to your contribution. 🙂

      • Faith says:

        ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ Clois.

        Wait, what were talking about? 😉

      • alladinsgenie4u says:


        Wait, what were talking about? 😉

        Oh No! The Queen has been poisoned by the Clois Virus which is directly affecting her grasp on all discussions related to Chuck. Time to call in Captain Awesome for the treatment. 🙂

    • armySFC says:

      @FT i agree with you on phase three. for me it was one of the most ridiculous episodes in the series. but i’ll weigh in on that when the episode comes up for discussion. when she tells chuck she is home in suitcase was it for me. like you said the apex of her commitment. it seems like TPTB can’t help picking on one character each season. last year it was sarah, this year it’s chuck. remember it took 2 full episodes to set up for phase 3. judging by the ratings of those eps it didn’t work out so well for the show.

      • jason says:

        @FT / @army – to me suitcase defined her sense of finding ‘home’, and phase 3 showed just how far the lioness would go to protect ‘home’ – quite different things from my POV

      • thinkling says:

        @Jason: well said!

      • armySFC says:

        jason, we have already seen on many occasions how far she will go to protect chuck. she killed a man in cold blood once to do it. this is old news just done with more flair to attract viewers.

        here is what separates the episodes for me. sarah has told chuck twice she would marry him. the first when he was asleep, “if you ask me again i’ll say yes” or something close to that. the second time was in phase 3 while chuck was in the chair.

        now what do both of those times have in common? he was NOT awake when she did. we are shown that he does indeed hear her. but how does she know for sure? she doesn’t. its a guess on morgan’s part. does she say it again when she knows he can hear her? no, she says “chuck” and kisses him when he wakes up. so she has never told him either thing when she is sure he can hear her. he even says later that things are fuzzy and remembers just a sconce of what sarah told him. these are the facts plane and simple with no reading in on the plot line or what i feel may have occurred. we still have not seen her say it to chuck when he is awake.

        in the suitcase we see her tell chuck while he is awake that she is home. which for me shows the utmost commitment. this sets that episode apart for me. there can be no argument that she knows that chuck knows exactly how she feels. the same can’t be said for the other two times. can we infer it yes, can we confirm it no.

      • atcdave says:

        You do understand most of us actually watch the show to have fun, right? I mean, it’s not really about character growth or what we learned this week. It’s mainly about having a good time. If an episode moves you, or says something about a character you like, or the human condition, or life the universe and everything; well that’s all pure bonus. But television is the entertainment business, and that’s what 90% of us are watching for. By that measure Phase 3 was simply as good as it gets to most of us. I’d watch Sarah beating up hoodlums any day of the week. And if Yvonne gets to show her acting skills too, that’s pure gold.

        For all that, I’d agree with Jason. It was awesome to see just how far Sarah will go. And I think it was important that Chuck knew in the end she did it all for him, not the Intersect. It recaptured much of what was lost after Colonel; and Chuck wasn’t just asleep, he remembered the conversation as he was struggling to come out of it in the lab. And then Morgan told him what happened. I’d call Phase 3 not just a fun episode, but epic for Chuck mythology.

      • armySFC says:

        dave i agree with you but i think you missed my point. my point in the rant was that i thought the suitcase did more to cement the relationship of chuck and sarah than phase 3 did. do i watch the show to have fun yes i do. but what might be fun for you may not be fun for me. most people like the sexting thing with morgan and sarah. i hated it. most people liked the she male jokes, i was surprised they used it. do i like morgan? not in the least. but most people do. the theft of store property in the last ep. i wont go there on how wrong i felt that was.

        the relationship, when on course is a plus for me. not because of the nerd gets the girl, i have seen that in real life so i know it can happen. i like a good romantic story. what i hate is when the story is turned for what ever reason. i like the missions and use of the intersect, when its needed. would i have watched the show from the beginning like i have if there were never any romantic hints about chuck and sarah? yes. because the concept intrigues me.

        as for the character development. a large majority of the posts on this board, including ones by you cover this topic. so its fair to say it is important to the posters here. it is for me as well. that’s why to me the last 3 episodes were tainted.

        i watch chuck to have fun and be entertained for one hour on monday night. like last year if it stops being fun they will be down one viewer.

        one thing i like about this blog is people can disagree with each other and no one gets offended. so if i said anything that offended you or any of the other posters, that was not my intent. ask BDaddyDL about me. he’ll tell you that i shot straight from the hip. i voice my opinions and listen to his. like here, we may not agree with what each other has to say. to me that doesn’t mean your opinion or my opinion is any better. dave i look forward to any future discussions we may have!

      • jason says:

        army – near your entire post I agree with strongly, esp I am with you on all of your ‘most people’ rants, I think you would be surprised how many agree with things like ‘being sick of all things morgan’ … but as you ably pointed out, some do like things others don’t, and a great discussion can be had.

        I just think sarah can show those lengths she will go again and again without it getting old. But, one of the flaws of this show’s writers is they can’t seem to move on, we know chuck loves sarah and visa versa, 17 straight eps of it, get them engaged and lets go – which is what was going to happen soon b4 the extension – now we will see if they learned their lesson from season 3, or if they somehow repeat the Prague mistake by taking back what they already wrote.

        one thing you have to realize, TPTB really thought 4×13 was it, 4×9 was an epic tribute to sarah walker the protector, sort of a conclusion to her character and a send off to Yvonne Strahovski’s action hero acting career. But you can only take so many curtain calls, at some point if you want viewers to stay in the theater, you have to produce more acts to the play … I hope this story can move on, with CS cemented together, not just for the last 5 minutes of the show, but for as long as the show can last … because that is the story they have told us, the story many of us have fallen for, since the ballerina scene.

      • armySFC says:

        Jason you said “one thing you have to realize, TPTB really thought 4×13 was it”. that i agree with 100%. last week i posted here, under the buy more section i think, my predictions of what 4.11 and 4.12 would be like. i stated to BDaddyDL from week one of the season i thought the engagement would come in 4.13 the last ep b4 the extension.

        and that’s the part that concerns me the most. if TBTB did think this was it, then i expect more doom and gloom than fluff and stuff over the next 2 episodes with the big make up proposal/birth scene to wrap everything up in a nice neat bow. they would have no reason not to ramp up the relationship angst like they have in the past. why? because they would have nothing to loose. they can still say they promised us they would be together at the end. and they are.

        like i said in the other post, if they go that route in 4.11, which i think they will, you will see the ratings plunge to a new low in 4.12. and then lower if my guess about these two eps are right. 4.13 may cause some people that have left to return to see the birth/engagement but that will cover only that ep. after that we will see the slow death of of a good show. because after s-3 people will not return again and more fans that were willing to stick it out will have gotten tired of it.

        these are just my thoughts. they are not based on any spoilers or teasers. they were formed before any of them were ever posted. my thoughts are based on how schwartz runs his shows and nothing more (i posted about him also last week). i hope i am wrong about what i see happening coming up. i would love to see what they have in store for c/s as a couple coming up. they could do so much with them working as a team. in a few weeks we will find out what direction they went in. this is one time that i hope i am wrong.

      • jason says:

        army – yea – if they “Prague” CS in any way shape or form again in 4×11 thru 4×13 or honestly anytime again, that 1.5M – 2.0M demo with hopes of 2.5-3.0M will drop to 1 to 1.5M faster than you can say Daniel Shaw. Makes very little sense to me to torpedo Sarah or the relationship, given what the have gone thru to re-establish her in the past 17 episodes.

        Possibly the best evidence they will not do something too foolish, is the manner in which the only source of any teaser info now is fooling around with the issue – my guess is his sources would not be too pleased if indeed schwartz / fedak were on a path to repeat the repulsive misery arc of season 3.

        Possibly the worse news, there is a cast spoiler out for episode 3×11, if he is the guy sarah is leaving chuck for – oh – oh – google agent rosenbaum chuck, IMDb website.

        The thing that confuses me most about what we know about 11-13, volkov needs to get caught, baby must be born, maybe an engagement?, and I would think at some point chuck has to take off his diaper and put on some big boy pants … doesn’t seem consistent with some elaborate Sarah arc, yet, that indeed seems to be what is getting hinted at????

      • atcdave says:

        Sorry if I misread your intent army. I’m not nearly as pessimistic about what’s coming; my bet would be that the worst thing that might happen a short term parallel to the Volkoff/Frost story where Sarah may go undercover to get close to someone that separates her from Chuck. But if they go that route I would also bet two things; we will know right from the start that neither Chuck nor Sarah are happy about it, and that the resolution is imminent. Now I would agree this would be a very foolish story for them to tell given how badly they abused their audience in S3; and there is a strong possibility it would fataly damage the ratings. Hopefully they don’t go there.

      • alladinsgenie4u says:


        Possibly the worse news, there is a cast spoiler out for episode 4×11, if he is the guy sarah is leaving chuck for – oh – oh – google agent rosenbaum chuck, IMDb website.

        Light Spoiler(sort of) follows.

        Agent Rosenbaum is played by Eddie Davenport who is the stunt double on the show. And he is listed as a stunt performer for 4×11. In all probability he is not the person being hinted at.

        But another actor listed in the episode cast list is Jean-Christophe Febbrari who is playing some guy named Pierre Melville. Here is a pic of him along with Adam Baldwin on the sets of Chuck.


        Looking at the picture, we may hazard a guess that he is playing some type of CIA/NSA agent. Maybe Sarah is partnered up with him and has to leave for a mission. Or maybe is Sarah’s ex. 🙂
        As for what you say may be an elaborate Sarah arc – I think the ‘teasers’ that you refer to have hinted that only 4×11 would be Sarah centric. And one more thing – are we sure that TD and LH are in 4×11 and 4×12 – because their names are not credited in the cast list(imdb) for 4×11 and 4×12. If they are not, then IMHO, 4×11 and 4×12 could be stand alone episodes with some links to Volkoff thrown in. And the resolution of the whole Volkoff/Mama B arc could very well be completely pushed into the back 11.

        Just spitballing. Who knows? Cant wait to get some official synopsis for 4×11.

      • atcdave says:

        I think it would be great if the Volkoff arc was pushed to the back half of the season; he’s been effective as a villain so far, and he’s quite the force to have hanging over things.
        I can’t see getting too upset over Sarah having to partner with someone else at this point, we know where her heart lies, and we know it won’t last. Even if there’s a threat of breaking up the team, it won’t actually happen.

      • JC says:

        They’ve been pretty blatant about the similarities between Sarah and Mary, so an episode or two where Sarah is forced into the same situation wouldn’t surprise me. The key is in the execution.

        Jason brings up a good point how many or if any of the dangling plot threads got pushed to the back eleven. Not counting the ones he mentioned there’s the bracelet, the new Intersect, a mention or conversation about Orion being dead, Volkoff’s motives beyond Mary, Chuck and Ellie lying to each other.

        Part of me is worried these last three episodes will play like last season. Either things will be ignored or we’ll get a massive plot dump that tries to tie everything together.

      • alladinsgenie4u says:

        JC, your worries are sound. Haven’t we already seen TPTB’s formula of dragging things out and trying to tie up everything in the final 15 minutes – thus leaving the fans feeling underwhelmed.

      • armySFC says:

        dave i would be ok with sarah having to go with another agent on a mission, and would see no problem with it. unless it was a seduction type of one that would not be good. in 4.07 chuck went on a solo mission, and sarah did go away for that month to tutkey. so in that context it would work. to make it really work they would have to have chuck on some kind of mission as well or be the back up for sarahs. something that i feel would go over real well with the fans was if on sarahs mission the agent tried to hit on her and she kicked his butt. i think most people would agree that the needs of ones job could send one party away from the other. as long as they don’t drag it out and have her involved with him, id be ok.

  2. jason says:

    I liked this ep more than many of our blog fans here, much like I enjoyed role models more than most. I wrote down 4 things before the credits that I not only enjoyed, but that sort of set the stage for the season:

    1 – the big 3 having to step up their game for the awesome’s, I love all family scene’s at the awesome’s, especially when sarah the normal girl has to deal, ellie expressed her worry about chuck, awesome was obsessing, awesome’s line of take notes, you’re next, morgan being totally annoying.

    2 – morgan still sucks before the credits roll, his don’t tell sarah / achilles heel advice to chuck, matter of fact, I think Morgan turned the corner for me when he was made Buy More manager later in this ep, right now, he still is burning up my FF button

    3 – Sarah’s packed and ready to go line to the general, she is so snarky with that line, many of her lines in this ep – snarky sarah is cool

    4 – casey’s advice to chuck, beautiful women have baggage, be happy you only have a suitcase issue with walker – defines chuck insecurities this season so far

    And that just got me to the opening credits.

    I love CS on missions, I got treated to two missions in this ep, I enjoyed them both, but the first one more. Again, Sarah was very sarcastic but funny with her lines, ‘you gotta be kidding’, ‘is she naked’, ‘put some clothes on’, and her reaction to the spider kiss request.

    Casey’s ‘shut up Grimes’ – my feelings exactly, I should make that into a screen saver.

    Then all of a sudden, sarah say’s let’s go home – a turning point – Sarah has a home. Sarah started using that word a whole lot this season after that, including her touching – Chuck – you are my home – you always have been at the end of the ep.

    Finally, I am of the mind, from the point chuck threw sarah on the bed to the next point on the screen, not only did several minutes pass, but possibly several days, ala the honeymooners, ok, I don’t really think that, but you get my line of thinking.

    I had lots of hope for a season full of the ‘Charles’s’ on missions after this episode, didn’t turn out that way, but maybe I will get a few more before the show ends for good. I sure enjoyed this one.

    • atcdave says:

      You mentioned one thing Jason that I’d wanted to comment on and forget. Morgan’s whole “Achilles Heal” argument. He says ever great romance has one, then proceeds to list only DOOMED romances. Kind of funny, would have been better if Chuck had called him on it.

    • Faith says:

      You did not like this episode more than me! 😉 Kidding. But seriously I loved this epi, if it was a man I’d have married it already 😀

      • jason says:

        @faith – I said more than most, I will give you that you liked it more than I did, but I am confused about marrying the epi, why can only men marry epi’s – now the epi’s leading lady, indeed, she makes me glad I am a man? A ? – do you agree with me and think some time was missing in the bedroom scene?

      • Faith says:

        Oh yeah, if you ask Ernie, hours worth 😉

        LOL, well as it stands same sex marriages can’t happen and I think with the tempermental nature of episodes, they have to be women LMAO. Kidding!

      • Ernie Davis says:

        Faith is right, I can be very specific on what was missing, but this is a family site. 😉 And this is why I didn’t review Suitcase.

      • alladinsgenie4u says:

        @Ernie – A one shot fanfic would do just fine. ;)So,when are you planning to write it.:)

  3. JC says:

    Suitcase had lots of great moments and a couple of wasted opportunities.

    Both Chuck and Sarah had some great moments though.

    Sarah’s jealousy when Beckman showed them the pictures of Sophia and Chuck asking if she was naked. And her dialogue in Sophia’s closet was perfect, she knew what was coming from Chuck. The fight was just OK but I loved the Falcon Punch at the end.

    Chuck showed he’s a normal guy with his reaction to Sophia. No matter how beautiful our wife or girlfriend is, a pretty girl walks by and our brain turns to mush. He also showed how smart he is with the tranq gloves. But my two favorite moments were his comments in the closet after Sarah gets jealous about Sophia being naked and when Sarah’s unpacking before the last mission. Chuck gets a lot of grief for his issues but give the man his due. Sarah has tons of her own and he handles it better than most.

    There were a few problems.

    I wish they didn’t exaggerate something like the idea of not unpacking for eight months to bring up a character’s issue. I don’t need that to understand Sarah has problems putting down roots. It really takes me out of the moment.

    Whether this was a rehash or continuation of Role Models both ended the same way. A heart felt speech and the standard ” I or You know how you grew up” line. That’s really getting old, its starting to feel like an excuse for the writers so they don’t have to really explore her problems.

    Poor Chuck and his abandonment issues are ignored once again. We did get it a little in Phase Three but I really want a scene where someone points out to Sarah how many people have left Chuck. Maybe it doesn’t matter to the writers as much as me.

    • thinkling says:

      I think this season is doing a pretty good job of exploring Sarah’s baggage … putting down roots is just the beginning.

      Phase 3 may be as close as we come to treating Chuck’s abandonment issues, although it was more of his insecurities, which in turn stem from his abandonment issues. Once Sarah knew her part in making him feel insecure, by her lack of communication, she went the distance to make up for it.

      The other thing is that Sarah has shown tremendous understanding of his mom search and has been sensitive to his feelings about the whole thing. That is not a direct acknowledgement of his abandonment issues, but it comes close.

      Putting the two things together, I’d say she has a good grasp on certain aspects of his abandonment issue, but fails to see how it bleeds over into their relationship.

      I just hope the growth we’ve seen sticks and gives us the empowered C/S we love to watch.

      • JC says:

        I think we’ve talked about this before Thinkling.

        I do think they’re doing a better job in how other characters acknowledge Chuck’s feelings when it comes to his mother. But most of the other times characters just dismiss whatever he’s going through. Compare that to Chuck and the way he helps other characters through their problems.

        And when it comes to Sarah, what annoys me is that line the TPTB always use. The standard “I or You know how I grew up”. For me it feels like a way of mentioning her issues while skirting around the cause. It also allows them to bring them up again whenever its convenient.

      • thinkling says:

        I see what your saying about the how-I-grew-up thing. It’s a black box that never gets opened. But I think they are actually beginning to unpack Sarah’s baggage. So, I guess I see some hope that we will progress beyond all that this season. At least I think I see growth in the right direction.

        As for Chuck, in a way that’s the “type” of character he is. He is a hero … a different kind of hero. He’s the regular-guy-hero that rescues everyone else without regard to himself. At the moment Sarah is becoming a lot more sensitive to him … a true partner for him. Morgan and Casey are somewhat attuned, and Ellie is clueless. Devon says OK, do your thing, Bro; just don’t bring it near my door or tell us anything about it.

        Interesting dynamics ahead.

      • atcdave says:

        Especially funny that now Ellie is the farthest away from all of them of actually “getting” Chuck. Its by her choice, but its not what I would have expected from previous seasons.

      • thinkling says:

        Yeah. It’s kind of sad, really. I would like to see some resolution to all that. Surely by 4.13 …

      • patty says:

        I have always felt that Ellie thinks Chucks motivations to be a spy are a lot like Morgan’s. It is cool and exciting. She obviously is unwilling to really talk with Chuck about it. I was hopeful that seeing him in action in “Coup” would do it…

        Maybe her mom or Beckman will tell her the truth, she might listen to them. Casey might tell her, but I can’t see him being harsh with her, and somehow I think that maybe what it takes.

      • thinkling says:

        @Patty: I thought Coup would do it, too. I was so disappointed at Ellie’s speech at the end of that.

  4. joe says:

    Favorite moments being; flirting just after they arrive in Milan, Chuck’s attempted “spiderman kiss”, Sarah’s reaction to the villain’s closet (“just say it”), “is she naked?”, Chuck closing the door on Sarah when the shooting starts, slap fight with The Hulk, runway cat fight, and “you are my home.”

    Excellent moments! Dave, I’m not able any more to say exactly what my favorite episodes are. Like you said, too many reach that top tier and others go in and out depending on my mood or on the last song I heard, I suppose.

    I find myself remembering favorite *moments* more, now; Chuck stammering at the fountain, trying to explain why he can’t live with Sarah (Not one complete sentence. Yet, when he asks “Do you understand?”, she immediately says “I do.”). Or Sarah not quite able to explain why she didn’t understand Chuck’s willingness to sacrifice himself for Morgan (“I don’t really have anyone in my life like that who cares about me,” she says.)

    In both cases, it’s the uncertainty and grasping of the one followed by the strength of the other that’s stunning to me. Memorable.

    Here in Suitcase they both teeter, Sarah as she stalls and continues to hide part of her heart, and Chuck as he tries to tell her that he understands, even when he doesn’t. His solid foundation doesn’t come out until he closes the door on Sarah thinking that will keep her safe.

    [And by the way, is that a metaphor? If locking her in a room away from danger was meant to be analogous to Sarah locking away her heart, both attempts failed miserably, didn’t they?]

    Sarah’s solid ground was revealed along with the picture she carried everywhere. Those become my favorite moments for the same reason.

  5. alladinsgenie4u says:

    This is slightly off topic but considering the fact that this is the most active thread right now. Very light spoilers follow.

    http://bit.ly/gXKpd5 – Ryan McPartlin Interview

    A small excerpt
    “It’s a tossup between John Casey [Adam Baldwin] and Sarah Walker [Yvonne Strahovski],” McPartlin says. “Because I know they take orders very well and they’d be able to protect the children and do everything to the best that I tell them to do, exactly how I’d tell them to do it. But maybe I’d lean towards Sarah Walker because she’s got more of a heart than John Casey.”

    Another step in the evolution of Sarah Walker
    Sarah Walker The Baby Sitter FTW!! 🙂

    • atcdave says:

      Thanks Genie, great interview. (Awesome even!)

    • herder says:

      Try and fit a late January birth with the timeline from Anniversary. Ellie announced her pregnancy after the six/nine month anniversary in September and is giving birth in January, four months later.

      • atcdave says:

        It is pretty funny. We’ve been over the “timeline” a couple times and it seems clear no one is very worried about the logic of it. Of course it is also possible there will be a big time jump, but things are pretty chaotic whatever they do at this point.

      • thinkling says:

        Only 7 months … lucky Ellie. 😉

      • JC says:

        Ellie’s a Bartowski and we know they’re special. So Chuck got the super brain and Ellie got the speedy womb.

      • thinkling says:

        Touché JC 😛

      • atcdave says:

        Speedy womb sounds like quite the super-power. So she can start popping out little Awesome-Bartowskis in record time.

      • jason says:

        given that 4×13 was the betting man’s last ep, I don’t think the timeline of the last show was going to be the top priority vs ending the series with a baby awesome.

        I would almost think the engagement was not planned in the same ep as the baby being born – I sure hope the engagement happens soon, so that shell game ends, and the hucksters can start a new one of some sort.

        Plus wedding stuff as side plots will fill season 4 part II with lots of warm and joyful family moments, which is what I like most about the show.

      • atcdave says:

        I agree with all that Jason. I’m still betting engagement in 4.11, baby in 4.13, wedding build-up as the remaining season unfolds, big to-do in 4.24.

      • thinkling says:

        Jason & Dave: Ditto and ditto

    • Jen says:

      Sarah Walker The Baby Sitter.. THAT i woudl love to see! As far as i can remember, we’ve never seen hoow Sarah deals with chilcdre. This could be funny! Will teh maternal instinct be there? i think it’s gonna come out and freak her out =P
      Genie.. this is @cholitau btw… different handle here ont eh blog than on twitter 😀

      • thinkling says:

        I think she’ll definitely be a little freaked, but when baby Awesome takes to her, she’ll be fine. She was pretty taken with the ballerina. That’s the only time I know of she was around kids. In fact, I can’t think of any other children on the show.

  6. PeterOinNJ says:

    Great article guys – both of you brought back to mind great ‘moments’ that really leave me heartwarmed.

    Thinkling, like Dave I like your ability to look for greater depth and meaning in these scenes. They may not all be black & white, but there are 256 shades of gray (or grey if you prefer) and seeing the nuances can heighten your appreciation of the whole. So I really like your ability to track Sarah’s suitcase and remember each incident clearly. Now I don’t want to re-open an already overworked discussion about S3 – but there is one more suitcase appearance I want to add – from the ‘misery arc’ (God I love that title). Her suitcase makes an appearance in Final Exam.

    Chuck finds Sarah in Castle after returning from a trip with Shaw to DC. She hasn’t answered or returned any of his phone calls and is evasive when he asks her about the trip when Shaw comes in with Sarah’s suitcase, which she left in the car on the way back from the airport. That exchange stirred a lot of discussion in the fandom, all of it centered around Sarah & Shaw. But maybe it really did go deeper than that. They had just returned from meetings that would determine Chuck’s future, and to Sarah, that future meant that her Chuck would change forever. It seems to me that she had already resigned herself to the fact that her home was gone and her bag was once again on the move – to someplace familiar, someplace safe. She was prepared to be on the move again. In hindsight, I find it strangely appropriate that it was a much smaller suitcase, really only a carry on bag. It tells me she has so much less to take with her as she moved on and maybe so little hope of picking up more.

    • thinkling says:

      Thanks Peter. You know I totally didn’t remember Sarah’s suitcase [in whichever episode that was] when she came back with Shaw. Great catch and good observations. Spot on with my train of thought of Sarah having closed herself in her suitcase again and given up on “Home.” Well said, too! Sarah really had become small and confused and miserable. The only way for her to turn off the misery and confusion was to revert to the unfeeling spy life. And that’s what she would have had with Shaw … an unfeeling spy existence. Ichk. Misery Arc is such an apt nickname!

  7. joe says:

    Ack! Forgive the OT comment once again, but I enjoyed this clip on Hulu.

    Well, you’ll enjoy the first half too, but it’s the second half you’ll really like!

  8. joe says:

    Oh my! More OT! It’s that time of the year again, folks, when everybody has their end-of-year polls up. The least of them is NOT E! On-line TV Show of the year poll.

  9. Faith says:

    I absolutely love the call backs to the previous mention/introspections of suitcases Thinkling, inspired!

    “In contrast to Sarah’s two suitcases, look at Chuck’s bedroom.”

    That was actually something I’ve been thinking about for awhile now, she leaves no mark. Anywhere. I mean look at her apt/hotel room, what part of that was really hers? The picture frame is about it. And therein is where Suitcase leaped frog over most episodes for me, the attention to detail, the emotional unraveling and yes the growth and progression of Sarah Walker, the woman.

    Accolades galore.

    • thinkling says:

      Thanks, Faith. It’s fun to look back. When I watched Suitcase the first time, I loved it, but now that I see what it kicked off and think of what was behind it, I love it even more. 🙂

    • Ernie Davis says:

      Actually if you look at the wide shot of Chuck’s bedroom in Fear of Death (I know, you two were concentrating on Zach in boxers) you can see that Chuck’s comic poster that used to grace the headboard has been relegated to a side wall and three tasteful photographs have taken that spot. There are also a few other subtle changes apparent in the room. By Fear of Death Sarah has marked her territory, and not just by continually stealing Chuck’s boxers or T-shirts to sleep in.

      • thinkling says:

        Aha. I HAD noticed the photographs. I’ve been trying to figure out what they are. I just hadn’t considered that they were Sarah’s. Maybe they picked them out together. Sarah may be tired of the retro-nerd decor.

        Good catch Ernie.

      • amyabn says:

        She also has a girlier lamp on her nightstand, with assorted lotions and stuff. I for one would like to see more of her personality in the apartment. I get that she is the new one in the former bachelor pad, but at what point do you start taking down the framed comic books and put up either art or pictures?
        I’d love to see more Sarah and Chuck photos or some of the photos Ellie had blown up and displayed (from the photo album).

      • Ernie Davis says:

        Well all Chuck’s toys and posters have been removed from the nightstands and headboard, you need to take these things slow you know.

      • atcdave says:

        I would expect more dramatic changes if they ever get their own place. I know when my wife first moved into my house we did very little and just sort made room to squeeze her in; the real shared abode happens when the couple gets a new place together ( and some of the biggest fights ever, the woman tried to make style a higher priority than a proper viewing area and sound field, weird ).

      • Ernie Davis says:

        Well I think Chuck and Sarah have that one covered. Big screen TV opposite the couch, with every game console known to man, but Sarah gets the remote.

      • atcdave says:

        But again that’s Chuck’s space. Moving to a new place together is when the decision making gets tricky…

      • patty says:

        Chuck’s ratty old bedspread has been retired too. There is a much nicer comforter now.

  10. First Timer says:

    Time to pay attention to this folks: The Sing Off is KILLING in the ratings. All two hours last night were north of 3–and the ratings rose for each of the two hours.

    If those reruns don’t pull next week and on the 27th and the ratings for the next batch of new episodes of Chuck stay at 2.0 or thereabouts, you can question why NBC would give the show a fifth season. Granted NBC might have bigger issues than Chuck per se, but the days when you can claim nothing NBC puts on will work on Monday are over. The Sing Off IS working and it is even cheaper to program than Chuck.

    • alladinsgenie4u says:

      I thought the Sing Off was a program that was scheduled to run only during the holiday period.?

      • atcdave says:

        Sing Off is a short duration, it also is going up against lesser competition (mainly reruns). But the concern is valid, if NBC can get decent ratings with a cheap reality show it makes Chuck seem less valuable. We really need to get those ratings up over the winter. Chuck doesn’t have to be the highest rated show on the network, but it does need to be among the upper rated shows or it’s days are numbered.

    • patty says:

      I don’t think Sing Off will be able to beat DWTS the judges are too polite and everyone actually seems to get along. I watched it last year (before I got into Chuck) and really liked it. I have been cheating this year and fast fowarding to the performances on DVR. I really love acapella (probably spelled it wrong though) choruses.

      And btw, yes the episode I first got into Chuck on was Pink Slip, although I did see the pilot when it first aired.

      • joe says:

        Patty, you have a rare and valuable position and point of view! Most everyone I know came to Chuck sometime late in season 1, or (most often) in season 2. I saw and liked a number of S1 episodes, myself, but as Gray would say, the episodes got downloaded into my brain in S2 and I’ve lived in a constant state of fear and anxiety – for Chuck‘s renewal – ever since! 😉

        I hope you’ve been able to see the early episodes in order (DVDs are indeed a blessing from God!). If not, drop hints for Christmas, will ya?!

        Anyway, sometime you must tell us what you saw in S3 that made you stick around. We’d love to know.

        And yes, though I’m a terrible speller, I’ll vouch you spelled acapella absolutely correctly!

    • Big Kev says:

      Fair enough – but we already know that Chuck doesn’t rate anything like as well as the latest singing/dancing/weightloss contest fad. You’re not comparing like with like.
      I’m sure the more relevant question (and I don’t know the answer) is how well Chuck ranks among NBC’s scripted shows? Unless Comcast are planning on having no scripted shows at all, or scrapping the ones they have and starting again (both unlikely) then they are going to need some original, scripted content. My guess is that if Chuck is somewhere near the top of the money-making list for NBC in that niche, then odds of a season 5 would be pretty good.

  11. Pingback: Episode of the Week: Chuck vs The Suitcase (4.02) | Chuck This

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